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The Top 10 took that stage Monday night with a mix of performances that were, well, mixed. Probably the top iTunes download of the night will belong to coach Adam Levine’s own band, Maroon 5, who kicked things off dressed all in white performing their newest catchy pop song, “Love Somebody.” Now who wants to compete with that? Luckily the remaining artists didn’t have to, but they did need to win votes. Here’s a look at how they went about doing that.
Blake Shelton was admittedly distracted in the wake of the massive tornado that tore through his home state of Oklahoma. After host Carson Daly checked to make sure Blake’s family was safe, which they were, the show went on with Holly Tucker singing the Christian hymn “How Great Thou Art.” “The was heavenly,” said Shakira. “You look like an angel . . . you move me.” Blake was impressed, too, saying, “You turned it up one more notch at a crucial point in the competition.”
Later, Blake gave a standing O to his Oklahoma brethren The Swon Brothers following their feel-good rendition of Randy Houser’s “How Country Feels.” Much credit goes to the duo, who kept the energy high as their thoughts went out to those affected by the devastation. “It’s hard to enjoy a night like this,” said Colton.
“You’re my retirement, so I really need you to pay attention and do good,” said Blake to Danielle Bradbery during rehearsals for “Heads Carolina, Tails California” by Jo Dee Messina. Good thing this kid thrives under pressure (or does she even feel it?). “You made country cool once again,” said Usher, calling Danielle “a shining star for Team Blake.”
Emotions also ran high on Team Adam when Judith Hill chose to pay homage to her late friend Michael Jackson. She talked about being torn over celebrating her relationship with the King of Pop, saying that some have accused her of exploiting his fame. Returning advisor Hillary Scott, of Lady Antebellum, conceded that what Judith was about to do was not an easy undertaking, but her jazzy rendition of “The Way You Make Me Feel” seemed to make the audience feel, in the words of Carson Daly, “incredible.”
Adam’s first-ever country singer, 19-year-old Amber Carrington, took on Kelly Clarkson’s “Breakaway” and blew away the coaches, quite literally, thanks to a wind machine. Joked Blake, “You look great in wind. You wear some wind good.” Shakira had some more useful comments, offering that it was “the perfect mix of country and pop—right in your wheelhouse.”
Sarah Simmons wanted to show her feisty side on Jesse J’s “Mamma Knows Best” and adviser Hillary was 100 percent onboard with the decision: “It will be good for everyone to see she’s just not an angelic voice,” said Hillary. Blake certainly liked it as he exclaimed, “That is just rock! You just radiated sexy tonight and I think you turned a corner, too. Man, you are a rocker! You can’t fake what you just did!” To which Adam replied, “I love hearing Blake wet his pants over you,” and then went on to declare this the performance of the night.
Shakira, down a team member after last week’s eliminations, felt like she was in good hands tonight with CeeLo Green filling in as her adviser. “He’s one of the sexiest coaches in the history of The Voice,” she gushed. CeeLo approved of Shakira’s first song choice: “Next to Me” by Emeli Sandé for Sasha Allen, whose powerful vocals and sassy attitude made her coach “so freaking proud.” Blake gave her a thumbs-up, too: “It was time for you to do something fun, uptempo and rocking—it was awesome!”
Shakira also wanted to show a different side of Kris Thomas, especially with ladies’ man CeeLo there to offer advice on how to be charismatic and deliver the swag. She picked Miguel’s “Adorn,” which Kris worried was too opposite of what was going on in his personal life. That concern may have shown through, as Adam pointed out: “Think less and have more fun. I want to see you open up more.” Usher put some of the blame on Shakira, saying, “You could have chose a better song.” That unleashed Shakira’s fiery side and as Usher and Adam took cover, she made an impassioned plea as to why America should keep Kris in the competition.
“It’s like guerrilla warfare right now,” said Usher going into the live playoffs one singer short from last week. While the competition’s biggest heartthrob, Josiah Hawley, may not have gone out and knocked the mentors dead with his crooning of “Clocks” by Coldplay, he was killing it with the ladies—most of them anyway. “This is a toughie one for me,” said Shakira. Adam agreed that the song was hard and Josiah’s performances was inconsistent. “I’m going to continue to nurture that voice,” said an encouraging Usher.
Closing out the show was indie artist Michelle Chamuel singing “Just Give Me a Reason” by P!nk, a performance that just left Usher beaming and he contended that there was a new performance of the night.
Of course, America will be the judge of that.
Next up: Tuesday’s results show will see two more artists go home.